All About Apples:
came to North America when European settlers brought apple trees with them
and planted them in their new homeland. These trees cross pollinated
with native crab apple trees which created some unique varieties for North
America. Now there are over 2,500 varieties of apples grown in the
Apples are very nutritious. They are high in soluble fiber, which
helps to reduce cholesterol levels. They contain flavinoids, which
reduce the risk of cancer; and they are a good source of vitamin A, vitamin
C, and folic acid.
So what's our best apple? You will get a different answer depending on who you ask!
It's really a personal preference. Apples have a wide variety of flavor.
Not sure if you like sweet or tart, soft or hard, yellow or red? No problem, we’d be happy to supply you with a sample.
What’s Karen’s favorite apple? It’s a tie between Gala, Jonagold, and Fuji. What’s Dan’s favorite apple? Any kind that Karen cooks into apple crisp!
Need some help choosing? See our "common questions" below or
simply ask one of us at the stand. We'd be more than happy to help
- Cameo – Medium to large size. Crisp, creamy white
flesh. Tangy flavor that gets better while in storage. Harvested
- Cortland - Red, very large, pure white flesh. Flesh
stays white longer than many other apples.
- Empire – Juicy and crisp with a blend of sweet and
tart flavor. Good for fresh eating and cooking. Also good
for candy and caramel apples. A cross between McIntosh and Red
Delicious. Longer storage life than McIntosh. Harvested in
Late September to October.
- Fuji – One of our absolute favorites! Big, Crisp, and sweet.
Very firm. Juice slightly subacid. Outstanding texture. Stores extremely well – and gets sweeter as it stores. Harvested in late October.
- Gala – Very pretty, medium sized apple. One
of our most popular. Fine
textured with a mildly sweet flavor. Excellent for fresh eating. First
picking around Labor Day.
- Ginger Gold – Sweet, spicy taste with a light
texture and a pleasant crunch. Good for fresh eating and apple sauce.
Keeps up to 6 months in storage. First picking in mid August.
- Golden Delicious – Fine textured, sweet, and juicy with a mild flavor and thin skin.
The most popular yellow apple. Good for fresh eating, baking, sauce, and dried apples.
This apple is a great choice for any use. Harvested in early October.
- Granny Smith - Green tart apple.
Harvested in early November. Storage life similar to Fuji.
Used for baking.
- Honey Crisp - Sweet, crisp, juicy apple. Extremely
popular. Cross of Macoun and Honeygold. A new apple, first introduced in 1991 at the
University of Minnesota. Good for baking and eating. Harvested in September.
- Jonagold – Highest sugar of any apple with perfect balance of acidity makes this a delicious choice. Juicy, crisp, and often very large. Brings great flavor to many dishes.
Cross between a Jonathan and Golden Delicious. Harvested in mid-September to late October.
- Jonathan – Pretty apple, good for snacking, salads, and cooking.
Somewhat tart. Good blending quality for apple cider. Harvested
- Jonamac - Cross of Jonathan and McIntosh. Medium in
size. Firm, crisp.
- Lodi - Early apple, tender, juicy. Available mid July.
- McIntosh – Slightly tart and juicy white
flesh. Good for fresh
eating, salads, and sauce. Slices loose shape when baked. Harvested mid September.
- Mutsu – Also known as Crispin. Good eating apple,
sweet and juicy, firm texture. Good for cider and sauce. Large apple. Harvested in October.
- Nittany - Developed by Penn Sate. It is similar to York
Apples. Stores well. Harvested in late September.
- Pink Lady - Crisp with a sweet-tart flavor. Beautiful
pink blush skin. Stores
well. Harvested in late
- Red Delicious – Most purchased apple variety in the U.S. Coarse textured, firm, and sweet. Not recommended for baking. Good for fresh eating, salads, and dried apples.
One of the best keeping apples. Harvested in late September – October.
- Rome – Very round, medium to very large.
Slightly tart. Good for baking and drying. Not considered a good eating apple due to dry flesh.
Keeps well. Harvested in late September – October.
- Stayman – Also known as Stayman-Winesap.
Firm apple, juicy, rich flavor. Mildly tart. Harvested mid October.
- Summer Rambo – Exceptionally juicy. Crisp.
Mostly used for cooking. Greenish-Red Apple. Harvested in August.
- Yellow Transparent - Early yellow apple. Early July.
Tender, juicy. Excellent flavor for sauce. Does not store
well. Available mid July.
- York - Crisp, firm, and tart. Good for snacking and
- Zestar! - Crisp, blend of sweet and tart flavors,
excellent for fresh eating and cooking. Available early to mid
COMMON APPLE QUESTIONS:
- I want to make applesauce. How many apples should I buy?
A half bushel will make 8-10 quarts of applesauce.
- I've never made applesauce. Is it hard to do?
Not at all. Wash the apples, chunk the apples, and put them in a
large stock pot. Add a couple of inches of water and cook on
med-high , stirring frequently, until you have the desired consistency.
We use a "Tomato Sauce Maker and Food Strainer" to remove the skins,
stems, and seeds. If you do not have one, you can purchase one at
the stand or remove the skins, stems, and seeds before you cook the apples.
If you prefer an exact recipe, we have one on our recipe page.
- What apples should I use to make my applesauce? This is
probably one of the most frequently asked questions and it is really a
matter of personal taste. Any apple can be cooked down - some are
not recommended because they take a much longer time to cook. The
most popular varieties used are Ginger Gold, Golden Delicious, Summer
Rambo, Jonagold, Jonathan (makes a pink sauce), McIntosh, and Yellow Transparent. A
number of people like to mix the varieties.
- Do I need to add sugar to my applesauce? No. Especially
if you start with a sweet apple. We often use Ginger Gold or
Golden Delicious and no sugar is needed. But if you
prefer a tarter apple, you will most likely want to add sugar.
- How long can apples be stored? Store
your apples in your refrigerator in a perforated plastic bag or container to prevent
them from drying out. You can add a couple of tablespoons of water to
help the humidity stay high. Most apples kept this way will be good until Christmas. Summer apples, such as Lodi, Transparent, and Summer Rambo, are not good keepers. Some apples are excellent keepers, such as Fuji or Red Delicious,
and will last much longer than Christmas. We have successfully
kept Fuji until late July by keeping them in a regular refrigerator.
A general rule of thumb is the later the variety, the longer amount of
time it will keep.
What kind of apple do you recommend for pies? This is another
frequently asked question about apples and one that I hesitate to answer
because we all have very different personal tastes. Are you looking for
a hard or soft apple? Sweet or Tart? Our family tends to go with hard
and sweet, making Fuji one of our favorites, but we also love soft and
sweet Golden Delicious and Jonagold in pies as well. Many bakers prefer a tarter apple
to balance out the flavor of the pie, such as Cortland, Granny Smith,
Mutsu, Rome, and Stayman.... So... Experiment and find
your personal favorite!
- Can Cider be frozen? Yes, up to a year. Be sure to remove 1-2
cups from each gallon before freezing.
- Is there any truth to the saying "all it takes is one bad apple?"
Yes, there is. When an apple is damaged, it emits ethylene gas,
which will cause the other apples to ripen too fast.
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